Top Summer Reading Games Using Chalk — Part 2


This post continues the Part 1 blog post with more ideas on how to use chalk as a creative way to learn how to read and write.

Chalk Message for Neighbors

Message for our neighbors: “Hi! I am Amy. Have a great day!” Source: The author

How to play

  1. Explain the project and the purpose (to make your neighbors smile) to your child.
  2. With your child, brainstorm a nice message you would like to share with your neighbor.
  3. Write down the message on the sidewalk for your child and have him or her trace over your letters using a different color. This will make rainbow letters or have your child write down the message first on a piece of paper, then on a sidewalk (chalk does not erase easily in case of mistakes).
  4. Add drawings like hearts, flowers, suns, and rainbows to make the message even cuter.

My personal experience

In this time of crisis, I like the idea of having our children think about others. It also makes me smile to imagine the happy faces of my neighbors reading this cute message.

Why I like this idea

  • It is personalized with the child’s name, so the child is motivated to create this project.
  • It practices writing skills with a generous purpose.
  • It helps our children enhance their creativity.

Chalk Letter Twister

My 5-year old playing Letter Twister — Source: Author

  1. List five words with a maximum of three to four letters and write them down either on paper or on the ground with chalk.
  2. Create a grid with the letters that make up the words you listed.
  3. Have your child pick a word for the next player.
  4. The player places each hand and foot on the letters composing the word selected while keeping their balance.
  5. Take turns.
  6. If you tumble, you are out!

If a letter is already covered by someone else, or if the word contains less than four letters, a hand or a foot goes (and remains) in the air.

The winner is the last one to fall over.

My personal experience

My daughter liked the idea and was inspired to come up with her own version. She drew a computer keyboard and hopped on the letters to send me messages.

Why I like this idea

  • It is perfect to practice spelling short and sight words, in both lower and uppercase letters.
  • It is a good stretching exercise.
  • It is inspired by the Twister game, which guarantees fun.

Chalk ‘Printable’ Games

How to play

Toddler chalk tracing game — Source: The author

For toddlers:

  1. Trace bubble letters and have your child trace or color inside.
  2. Trace letters with guiding lines for your child to reproduce the letter.
  3. Trace dotted letters and have your child follow the lines.

For children learning CVC and sight words (using lower or upper case letters):

Chalk learning games — Source: Author

  1. Write CVC words with a missing letter for your child to find (start with the first letter, then the last, then the middle letter).
  2. Sketch a cat, a rat, a hat, a car, a sun, a dog, etc. and have your child spell the word either out loud or have them write down the letters on short lines you have traced on the ground.
  3. Create a grid with hidden sight words like the picture above and write down the sight words they need to find.

My personal experience

I found the inspiration in printables I use for my children and adapted the ideas to sidewalk chalk games. I am offering free printables here based on an inspiring early reader book series I am creating. If you want more, offers free worksheets.

Why I like this idea

  • It combines play and learning: Children consider printables and worksheets as class/schoolwork but with chalk and an outside setting they automatically see it as a game.
  • Chalk games practice fine motor skills while getting fresh air.
  • The long list of CVC and sight words makes this game easily repeatable.

What are your favorite chalk activities?

Previously published on “A Parent Is Born”, a Medium publication.


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